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Old 03-23-2012, 01:08 PM
 
10,891 posts, read 9,067,869 times
Reputation: 15709
Quote:
Originally Posted by MtnSurfer View Post
Well, this helps some but is still pretty vague. What price range are you thinking of for homes if you are considering buying? Most folks from other states want to buy a home for a low amount even before getting familiar with an area. A better decision in the majority of cases is to rent first. Then you will be better prepared to make a informed decision once you determine if a lower cost area is a good fit for you long-term.

With this criteria I would say check out Santa Maria for commuting into Cal Poly San Luis Obispo or Seaside & Marina going to CSUMB. You are aware of higher out of state tuition fees right? Also be aware that CA State Universities have recently announced that they will freeze admissions due to budget cuts. Read this article for more info:
COS also affected by CSU enrollment freeze | Visalia Times-Delta and Tulare Advance-Register | visaliatimesdelta.com

Are you planning on persuing some kind of degree, just want to take few classes or simply like being in a college town near college age ppl. Your criteria is still very unclear, not specific enough. So trying to respond is like throwing darts at a dart board with eyes closed.

Derek
Hi Derek et al,

I'm a little vague because I just began thinking about this. I work from home, and I just recently realized how much I can't stand harsh weather.

I have already been (good naturedly) accused of having a "tight lipped East Coast attitude" by one denizen of "The Golden State" which is odd since I live nowhere near a coast, currently. Also, a psychic advised me to do this. I'd thought about it on my own, and she confirmed it. Most East Coast people think I may, or could have once been from; the State of California. This is not always so good natured, but I know what they mean, and I'm comfortable with the accusation - or compliment.

I am exploring the idea of having multiple residences. Because no one place seems to suit my needs all the time. I did have one residence at one time, that was pricey, and on the actual East Coast. I felt as though the house owned me, and not the other way around.

I found my current area, while searching for a really affordable place to live with walkability and a sense of community. My children will be off to college soon and I will have freedom to travel when I wish, while holding down a home base.

I am well aware that California is not known for it's low prices. There could be an area that I have overlooked, is up-and coming, or somehow by passed my radar, which is far from omniscient.

My husband is not being transferred to a corporation called Norchronitron, and we do not have a "relocation specialist" assigned to us. I'm just beginning to look, and to gather information. Since I am already a city data member, I thought I'd ask here.

Calm down, I am not a child pornographer or an agent of the South Korean government. I think about coming in peace.

Unlike some however, I have been a bit further off the beaten path in my travels within your state, and I am well aware that between places that are household words - or at least would draw correct answers from most people during a rousing game of "California Demographics Trivia", that there are places beyond Beverly Hills and Santa Barbara or Compton and Oakland that might be known to Californians that are very nice, or not so nice, by most peoples standards.

I am also aware that there could be no where like that. But, hey, you never know.
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Old 03-23-2012, 01:18 PM
 
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Where I live currently, is low in crime for a city of it's size, but crime exists and there are places I would not go late at night except if accompanied by the National Guard.

Compared to the overpriced suburb that I left, this place is oozing with culture, and beautiful older homes under 100,000K just begging to be restored.

However, just one or two states t the East, this would not be the case. Not in NY, NJ or New England.

I am not expecting much, really and I also know that it is possible that it does not exist.
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Old 03-23-2012, 01:31 PM
 
Location: Monterey County, CA
3,668 posts, read 6,831,586 times
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Well there may or may not be a place like that for your family in CA. But yes, being so called tight lipped as you described it and then asking locals for dream location ideals makes it difficult to answer in any sort of realistic way, though some of us try.

Bottom line: CA RE prices are high which should be no secret to anyone looking online at them or listening to the news. But since 'afforable' is a relative term it could mean anything to anyone. However generally speaking, especially if you don't specify, it means midwestern prices (<200K). Then when you combine it with all the other locational ideals it really narrows the options. Keep in mind there are many native Californians who don't own a home but choose to live here for the location. While many others have bought a home and now regret it, are under water, mortgage broke, in the midst of foreclosure, short sale, etc... It's not always shangri la, although the pros outweigh the cons for many of us. That's why we stay.

** Edit, I just saw your post above. Based on what you asking I think you need to make some concessions with weather, price, etc... If weather look to northern CA near Chico state for school. But 100K is not very doable in the majority of the state with milder weather and all the other criteria combined. Even though you think that you are not asking for much, you really are in CA. Maybe Florida or the Carolinas would be a better fit.

Derek

Last edited by MtnSurfer; 03-23-2012 at 01:43 PM..
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Old 03-23-2012, 02:38 PM
 
Location: SoCal
4,360 posts, read 3,839,759 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bluesmama View Post
Since when do "mega churches" help to run down an area? Just curious.
When they make lots of noise or mess up traffic or parking availability.
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Old 03-23-2012, 02:53 PM
 
Location: Santa Cruz, CA
2,192 posts, read 3,151,591 times
Reputation: 1938
Quote:
Originally Posted by MtnSurfer View Post
See the first threads of any forum at the top. They are usually FAQs, read this first before posting a new thread, etc... Constant reocurring questions which get asked and answered multiple times are prime candidates.

I want a funky, artsy, progressive, friendly place, with great weather, low crime, good schools, close to universities and jobs opportunties, not too far from the beach. And of course buying a home for under 200K, but preferrably much less would be ideal. Sound familiar?

Derek
Got it.

And Sheena .... have a looksy at that heat map that i posted for you.
If i understood a previous post of yours suggesting that you wanted to find a home in your dream location for 100K, it seems that you are asking for the impossible!
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Old 03-23-2012, 02:58 PM
 
Location: Monterey County, CA
3,668 posts, read 6,831,586 times
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Sheena,

I apologize if what I said came off as rude in any way. It wasn't so much directed at you but rather the high volume of similar requests we see on the CA forum. And I can understand where it is coming from because I have lived in other more affordable states where decent houses in fairly nice neighborhoods can be had for < 200K. The major difference with those states and CA is the weather, scenery, coast, multicultural environment and a whole host of 'other' factors beyond housing. But as soon as someone inevitably asks for all the other 'better' qualities of CA plus affordable housing it is usually, not always, a fairy tale place, not that its wrong to dream. And with certain concessions more affordable living can be found for some. But it really depends what you are willing to give up to get the lower cost home vs. looking at other more affordable states. For the majority of Americans not living in CA there is a major paradigm shift which will need to occur since they have a completely different point of reference - i.e. home prices in their neck of the woods. Some are simply not prepared to make that shift.

Derek

Last edited by MtnSurfer; 03-23-2012 at 03:16 PM..
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Old 03-23-2012, 03:39 PM
 
Location: Portlandia "burbs"
7,767 posts, read 7,526,929 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sheena12 View Post
I am guessing that the above is mutually exclusive. Not expensive, not depressing, nice weather.

What is nice weather? Nothing harsh. No 101 degrees. No cold rainy places. Nothing cold.

Perfect temps? Low 50 degrees. High 80. Mostly 70.

Been to some beautiful places in CA - San Diego, Santa Barbara, Santa Monica, Monterrey. I don't mind parts of the valley.

Places that I wish to never visit again - El Monte, El Cajon, Riverside, and Needles. I was only in each for a day, but at least when I was, ten years ago, they were not for me.

Is there a nice place that is perhaps up and coming, that I am missing?

I am politically left of center, if that is of help.
I really, really think you should research into the Sebastopol and Novato regions above San Francisco. Real estate is expensive there but check into home foreclosures. The weather and political climates would both be to your liking. They're small but close enough to the Big City, and close enough to the coast, too.

A friend of moved from Oregon to Carmichael, CA, and she bought a darling 3-bdrm house for a steal. It was a foreclosure. And she loves living there. (But you probably wouldn't. It's by Sacramento and it gets very HOT.)
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Old 03-23-2012, 04:58 PM
 
10,891 posts, read 9,067,869 times
Reputation: 15709
Quote:
Originally Posted by MtnSurfer View Post
Sheena,

I apologize if what I said came off as rude in any way. It wasn't so much directed at you but rather the high volume of similar requests we see on the CA forum. And I can understand where it is coming from because I have lived in other more affordable states where decent houses in fairly nice neighborhoods can be had for < 200K. The major difference with those states and CA is the weather, scenery, coast, multicultural environment and a whole host of 'other' factors beyond housing. But as soon as someone inevitably asks for all the other 'better' qualities of CA plus affordable housing it is usually, not always, a fairy tale place, not that its wrong to dream. And with certain concessions more affordable living can be found for some. But it really depends what you are willing to give up to get the lower cost home vs. looking at other more affordable states. For the majority of Americans not living in CA there is a major paradigm shift which will need to occur since they have a completely different point of reference - i.e. home prices in their neck of the woods. Some are simply not prepared to make that shift.

Derek

First let me say that I am not at all offended. I have a sense of humor.
Living where I live now is not perfect. If I wrote that I was looking for "the perfect place to live," I must have been in a fugue state.

I am just hoping to learn more about some places that I might like. Somethings in my expectations may need to change.
My price may have to increase.

There are some things that if changed, would make this not worth doing.
There are some places that have been mentioned that are so not interchangeable, at least for me, with California.
Of course I have heard of North Carlolina. I enjoy visiting certain places there, but it is a very Red state that attracts Northeasterners and Mid-Westerners with a pretty conventional, if not conservative value system, who are searching for Mayberry and the 1950s, With the exception of Ashville, it's not a place where I would want to spend much time.

I do think that if you are from an "iconic area", state or city, one is going to get a fair amount of seekers and dreamers.

If I am the most unrealistic poster you all have had to deal with, think of yourself as lucky!

I visit the NYC forum frequently. I was born there, and lived there for years. I don't become annoyed when for example, a twenty something who has watched one too many re-runs of "Sex And The City" ask where they can find a one bedroom apartment in Manhattan, in a safe area, that is under $1,000, I am patient and generally try to help, if I am in that mood.
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Old 03-24-2012, 04:29 AM
 
10,891 posts, read 9,067,869 times
Reputation: 15709
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bluesmama View Post
I really, really think you should research into the Sebastopol and Novato regions above San Francisco. Real estate is expensive there but check into home foreclosures. The weather and political climates would both be to your liking. They're small but close enough to the Big City, and close enough to the coast, too.

A friend of moved from Oregon to Carmichael, CA, and she bought a darling 3-bdrm house for a steal. It was a foreclosure. And she loves living there. (But you probably wouldn't. It's by Sacramento and it gets very HOT.)
Both good ideas. Did a bit of checking, and they are indeed two places that I have never heard of. North of S.F. would be moderate temps, and the political thing is good.

I'd like to hear more about Carmichael also. Other than it getting hot, (it gets incredibly hot in the Valley in which I live) is there something else that you think I wouldn't like?

I'm curious about what your friend likes about it.

Thanks again!
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Old 03-24-2012, 06:07 PM
 
Location: Portlandia "burbs"
7,767 posts, read 7,526,929 times
Reputation: 16797
Quote:
Originally Posted by sheena12 View Post
Both good ideas. Did a bit of checking, and they are indeed two places that I have never heard of. North of S.F. would be moderate temps, and the political thing is good.

I'd like to hear more about Carmichael also. Other than it getting hot, (it gets incredibly hot in the Valley in which I live) is there something else that you think I wouldn't like?

I'm curious about what your friend likes about it.

Thanks again!
I will ask her.
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